Revenge of the Benchwarmer

Spencer Jones, Sports Editor

I’ve been around sports my entire life, though I wasn’t necessarily good at them. In grammar school I only made the boys softball team because they couldn’t reject me. It was kind of like the No Child Left Behind act of extracurricular activities. No matter how much I dropped a pop fly, or ran the wrong way on the bases, they couldn’t reject me. This was probably the first and last time I was picked for a team sport, because one day, while I was cheering on the bench it hit me. Yes, a bat hit me. Knocked unconscious, I realized that playing organized sports was not my calling, and I retired at the early age of 13.


When high school came around I became more involved in the behind-the-scenes aspects of sports. I learned all of the rules and play calls, anything that I could do to stay relevant. Basketball and boxing were probably the only sport that I attempted to play, and I was quite good at them. Freshman to junior year, I attended basketball camps arranged by Sonny Parker, father of Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker. Boxing came around when I understood that I had a lot of anger that wasn’t healthy for anyone to carry around. Maybe it was from that bat hitting me in the head, or all of those years of being picked last during gym class.


I learned over the years that I can talk about sports longer than my un-athletic body can last playing one. Sitting on those hard wooden benches, or filling up water bottles is where I found out my true passion for sports centered around me being off of the court.


Fast forward to present day, my sports knowledge has taken me to places that I was once looking at on my television. I’ve had the honor of working with TV crews on professional basketball games, both high school and collegiate sports. Most notably I worked as a camera utility for Game 5 of the NBA Playoffs between the Chicago Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks, utility for the 2015 ESPNU Powerade Jam Fest, Camera Operator for the City Colleges of Chicago’s Game of the Week, Production Assistant for the 2014 Midwest Emmys, and NBC’s new hit drama Chicago Med. Now, I’ve been given the opportunity to serve as the Independent’s Sports Editor with a group of talented writers.


To work for an organization that allows me to talk and write about sports is a dream come true. I can assure all of our readers that this semester’s issues will be informative, witty, and as exciting as last year’s.